Friday, April 16, 2010

UCI South Regional Assembly- Why You Should Attend

Register today for the
LAUC Southern California Regional Meeting

We all know that LAUC is a self-determining and planning body, and that we are all interested in future of our profession and in our own professional development at the University of California. That’s a given. But you should attend this region’s meeting because the responsibility and value of participation isn’t all that different from that of a vote in an election. You are a part of a solution and can contribute to a plan to improve as a group. You provide the impetus for change, and understand how decisions are made and why. You get to choose based on your priorities and values and the priorities and values of your UC.

But some people ask, why should I, as a (insert your departmental or divisional affiliation here) librarian come to the LAUC Southern Regional Meeting? All of these agenda items look like they’re related to someone else’s job. But, all of these agenda items are also intertwined with what we do. They affect one another. They are not truly separate. Take a look at SOPAG , HOTS , HOPS and the UC Commission on the Future. It’s pretty clear by looking at the reports, initiatives, proposed policies and actions, that communication and collaboration are required across many areas. They do affect you and they do require your consideration.

Don’t reference services change if students of all stripes don’t have to come to a desk to get reference assistance or resources because professors have changed their delivery of education, their assignments, or their research (Topic 1)? They do. Library instruction changes. Acquisitions changes. Collections change. Processing changes. Licensing changes. Access services changes. Personnel changes. Where people work changes (home, department, you name it). Skills change. The technology changes. Space needs change. The amount of money needed and how it’s controlled changes. Unique collections change. Archival curation changes. This is only one example of the ripples that radiate from a single set of actions.

This still, however, doesn’t get to the heart of what we can do in a regional meeting. We already have answers to what we might do in the form of reports and initiatives in play, but we need to decide where to place our energies as a group because our work is increasingly distributed across all UC libraries. So, decide. What solutions of those offered here on this blog and in our own campus assemblies work best for all of us? How will we know if we have succeeded? How can we minimize risk and maximize benefits to everyone through testing and evaluation? What are you able to commit to? What can we achieve and when?

The heart of your participation in a regional meeting is a focus on solutions-based concepts associated with concrete actions. Not the specific issues or technologies that you dislike or champion, but a careful consideration and articulation of the factors that will facilitate positive actions and ways to overcome impediments. So, how can you do this? It seems overwhelming, but preparation will make it less so.

*Look at the questions that Esther Grassian posted for the meeting and take a specific note how you rank and articulate your responses. Post your thoughts in the comments or apply to post to the blog via Phoebe Ayers. Your ranking of these questions forms the basis of your values and will help you decide what’s really important.

*Take a look at the discussion group notes and decide how to address the notes that were taken. Change the questions you see into propositions and try some on for size. Choose a couple. What are the elements that will allow a proposal to work? How will we test and/or evaluate the substantial success of a proposal to determine what is of highest value to our clients? If you can’t evaluate it, it’s not a proposal that can be addressed. What do we need to change to implement those ideas? How much money? What kinds of technologies? How much time would it take? How much disruption or training would it involve? What are the easy wins (things everyone can do)?

*Take a look at this (admittedly incomplete) mapping of the nine topics onto the five prepared for the LAUC Southern Regional meeting agenda:

Topic 1: The consequences of changing university pedagogy.
See Campus roles ; Relationship to Information Providers ; Reference ; Technology ; Library Buildings

Topic 2: Preparing the current and future generations to work in 21st century settings.
See Personnel ; Reference ; Relationship to Information Providers ; Technology ; Organizational Culture

Topic 3: Acquiring unique materials assuming a UC one copy universe – challenges and justifications.
See Collections ; Technology ; Library Buildings ; Campus roles ; Relationship to Information Providers

Topic 4: Evaluating ourselves for promotion. What should count in the future?
Relationship to Information Providers ; Reference ; Technology ; Campus roles

Topic 5: Getting stuff where it needs to go: Discovery and delivery.
Technology ; Reference ; Campus roles; Relationship to Information Providers

Here’s what will we do at this meeting after you have done your homework:
We will gather your proposals, write them down and synthesize them and vote on them. Once we have compiled your votes, we will communicate them to everyone.

What are your comments?

Register today for the
LAUC Southern California Regional Meeting


Louise Ratliff said...

I would like to suggest adding an additional topic, if people think it would be appropriate, and that is Technical Services, as in Cataloging and Metadata creation and management. There are some references to NGTS under the Collections topic, so it might be easier to call this Collection Management, and that could include all aspects. What do people think?
--Louise Ratliff, UCLA

Kristin said...

The UCI regional meeting will be looking at things from a slightly more global (and then, more specific) perspective than the original 9 Fall Assembly Topics, which have been incorporated into our 5 topics.

Each of the 5 topics affects every area of the library in some way. Technical Services, Public Services, and other divisions are not being left out.

Let me give a few examples based on some of our topics:

1. CHANGING UNIVERSITY PEDAGOGY affects instruction and reference. It also what, how much, and what formats we buy materials in. This affects Technical Services and Materials Distribution (ex. Access services, ILL).

What and how new librarians learn affects the perspectives and abilities of future librarians. What will they already know? What do we need to provide training for?
Again, this affects every library division.

What we acquire is influenced by university pedagogy & research, tenure & publication requirements, funds, what classes are being taught, space, etc. This affects how Technical Services will work. It affects materials distribution. It affects how we work with students & faculty in Reference & Instruction.


The idea is to look at these global topics, identify the factors involved, see how they affect librarianship, and figure out possible solutions to the "problems" posed that can move us forward and position us to serve the needs of our users.

Check out Dana's post above ( to see an example of the type of thought & discussion process we are hoping to foster.

--Kristin Andrews, UCI